Blackjack Terms from A to Z
Probably, you know what a hit, stand, split or bust is, but there are many other blackjack terms that will be new to you. These terms will come in handy if you’re gonna play blackjack.
Anchor – Anchor refers to the seat right to the dealer which is usually the last one to be taken as the cards are dealt from the left to the right.
Blackjack – Blackjack is the best hand a player can get. It has a hand value of 21 and usually consists of an Ace plus a 10, King, Queen or Jack (black). It’s an unbeatable combination which will always beat the dealer’s hand unless he’s got the same.
Bust – Going bust means exceeding the maximum limit of 21.
Bust Card – An individual card that brings the player over 21.
Bottom Dealing – Bottom Dealing is a term for a dealing technique when the dealer deals the cards from the bottom instead of the top of the shoe.
Buy – This term is commonly used in pontoon and refers to doubling a player’s bet.
Cut Card – Cutting cards are plastic cards which the dealer uses to cut a deck of cards after shuffling them.
Camouflage – Camouflage is a term which refers to a technique used by players to ‘disguise’ their real strategy and confuse the dealer and casino.
Card Counting – Card counting is a famous advantage play technique used by gamblers in order to reduce the house edge. Card counting banned in most casinos and considered cheating in general.
Draw – Another term for hit.
Double (Double-Down) – Doubling down means placing an additional bet (same as the original one) in exchange for standing after receiving one more card.
Deck Penetration – This term used to describe how many decks the dealer uses after shuffling them all together. In most casinos, dealers use 6-8 decks.
Early Surrender – Early surrendering describes a player’s decision to surrender their bet before the dealer looks for a blackjack.
Even Money – If a player has blackjack and the dealer’s first card is an ace, the player can accept a payout of 1:1 (even money) before the dealer reveals the second card. Even money is a type of insurance bet which players rarely take.
Face Cards – Face cards are cards that have a ‘face’ on them – King, Queen, and Jack. There’s a total of 4 in each deck.
First Base – The first base term describes the first seat to the left of the dealer. The player sitting in this spot receives the first cards.
Flat Bet – This term describes betting the same amount on each hand.
Five Card Charlie – An automatic win in some blackjack variations with a hand of five cards without going bust.
Face Up Game – A game of blackjack where the cards are dealt face up.
Face Down Game – A game of blackjack where the cards are dealt face down
Hard Hand – A hand in which the player will go bust on the next hit. The ace in a hard hand counts as 1.
Hit – A term players use to ask for another card from the dealer.
Hole Card – A term that describes the first card in the dealer’s hand which is usually dealt face down.
Insurance – A special type of side bet offered by the dealer when his face-up card is an ace. The player can choose to place the side bet at half the value of their original stake. The bet pays 2:1 if the dealer has blackjack. If he doesn’t, the player loses the wager.
Later Surrender – A term used in some blackjack games when the dealer doesn’t have a blackjack.
Natural – The term natural describes getting a blackjack during the first two hands.
Perfect Pairs – Perfect Pairs is a term which describes getting two cards of the same color and value.
Push – Push is essentially a tie between the player and dealer when it comes to the total value of the hands. In this case, the player neither wins or loses anything.
Point Count – Another term for a specific card counting strategy where the player chooses to take the net value of a card at the end of the hand.
Pitch Game – Dealing a blackjack from 1-2 decks of cards.
Shoe – The device that holds the decks of cards.
Soft Hand – A hand which contains an ace that counts as 11 and another card. If the player decides to hit, the value of the ace changes to 1.
Stand – A term players use when they stop asking for more cards because they’re satisfied with their hand.
Split – Splitting allows a player to split cards into two hands that are played separately. The bet on the split hand is equal to the original.
Stiff Hand – A hand which doesn’t stand great chances of winning. It usually includes cards with a total value of 15, 16, and 17, which means that a single low card may result in a bust.
Surrendering – Surrendering allows a player to fold and get half of his stake back.
Shuffle – Shuffling is a special system used by the dealer to mix the cards randomly before dealing.
Stand-Off – Another term for a push.
Tell-Play – Tell-play refers to a technique used by players when they closely observe the dealer in order to determine what they have in their hand.
Third Base – Third base is another term for the anchor spot at the table (right to the dealer).
Tie – Tet another term describing a push or a tie.
Twist – Twist is a term used in pontoon which basically means hit.
Unit – A unit in blackjack refers to the minimum bet a player can place.
Upcard – The face-up card in the dealer’s hand
Wonging – Wonging is a term which describes a player who ‘back counts’ and observes the game until they think it’s in their favor. At that point, the player decides to join the game.